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Think you could pen a hit song? Write and Shine launches Songwriting Competition with BIC® and YouTube’s Bethan Leadley

29 June 2017

Write and Shine competition launches

Singer/songwriter, 4Music TV host and YouTube sensation, Bethan Leadley, has teamed up with Europe’s leading stationery brand, BIC® to give one young budding lyricist an amazing opportunity to get a break in the music industry, just by putting pen to paper.

By getting lyrical with a BIC® 4 Colours™ Shine pen, one talented songwriter aged 15 to 24 from across the UK will win the chance to go in studio with Bethan and a crew of music industry professionals to produce their song.

The winner will have their song performed – or could perform it themselves on stage with Bethan - in front of thousands of people on the main stage at The Big Feastival on Saturday 26 August. The festival, which takes place at Alex James’ farm in The Cotswolds, has a line-up that also includes Olly Murs, Louisa Johnson, Ella Eyre, Betsy, Frances and many more. 

Throughout the process, they’ll be rubbing shoulders with talent agents, music producers and professional songwriters to give them an amazing behind the scenes look at how the music industry works and even a chance to get their foot in the door.



The winner will also feature in a short film, which will be released along with their song on Bethan’s YouTube channel, which has 23 million views and counting. 

If that isn’t enough, anyone making it onto the shortlist of four will get to hang out for a day with a friend or family member at The Big Feastival, where they can take part in song writing workshops with some big names from the music industry and contribute to a special lyrics wall.

Bethan, who started her songwriting career at 14, said “Writing songs is a great way to get a break in the music industry. While there are plenty of talented singers around, it’s much rarer to find someone who understands hooks, can shape melodies and has an interesting take on lyrics.

“I’m really excited about working with BIC on this songwriting competition, because you don’t even need to be a singer to enter. I think music and lyrics can be one of the truest forms of expression and it will be amazing to help an undiscovered talent shine.”

The BIC® Write and Shine competition, which is being hosted on The My BIC Pen Facebook page, is open to anyone in the UK aged 15 to 24. It opens for entries from 12am Monday 26 June and closes 12pm Sunday 16 July. 



All entries need to be emailed to [email protected] and include the entrants name, age, telephone number and original lyrics typed into the body of an email, plus a short video (.mov or MPEG.4 shot on an iPhone or Android) of the entrant stating their name, age, and what genre their song is, performing or reading their lyrics in tempo and showing their handwritten lyrics.

A team of songwriting experts and professional musicians lead by Danny Cope, Curriculum Leader: Popular Music and Songwriting at Leeds College of Music, Bethan and BIC will whittle the entries down to the best four, which will then be put to a public vote on The My BIC Pen Facebook page from Friday 4 to Friday 18 August 2017. 

Then it’s straight into an amazing week of songwriting, recording in studio and VIP festival fun for the winner.

Danny’s top tips for penning a hit are:

• Be you: Write what you genuinely connect with so that listeners can connect with it too.

• Make it memorable: Try to write an immediately memorable title and/or lyrical ‘hook’ that captures the attention of the listener, and try to keep your lyric simple, clear and concise. 

• Think about your angle: Choose an engaging subject, and/or write about it in a fresh and relatable way.

• Structure your lyric carefully: Structure your lyrics so that the chorus (if there is one) stands out and is memorable, and so that other sections of your song contextualise it well. Think about developing different angles in different parts of the song.

• Be creative: Think about whether there are more expressive or interesting words available than the ones you are using, and don’t be afraid to experiment with imagery, figurative language and wordplay.

• Think about rhythm: Consider how busy your lyric will be from section to section and whether you need to include relatively fast dense sections, and slow sparse sections. 

• Communicate clearly: Try to place your words on the beat so that syllables that would be naturally stressed in speech are stressed on musical beats, and avoid re-ordering words in an unnatural way to force rhymes. 

• Write to re-write: First drafts are exactly that. Don’t be afraid to go back in and refine bits that aren’t working too well. That can make all the difference.

So let your creativity shine and get writing!

Exclusive Bethan Leadley Interview

About BIC® 
BIC is a world leader in stationery, lighters, shavers and promotional products. For more than 60 years, BIC has honoured the tradition of providing high-quality, affordable products to consumers everywhere. Through this unwavering dedication, BIC® has become one of the most recognised brands in the world. BIC® products are sold in more than 160 countries around the world. In 2016, BIC recorded Net Sales of 2,025.8 million euros. The Company is listed on “Euronext Paris” and is part of the SBF120 and CAC Mid 60 indexes. BIC is also part of the following Socially Responsible Investment indexes:  CDP’s Climate A List, CDP’s Supplier Climate A List, CDP Supplier Engagement Leader Board, FTSE4Good indexes, Ethibel Sustainability Index (ESI) Excellence Europe, Euronext Vigeo – Eurozone 120, Euronext Vigeo – Europe 120, Stoxx Global ESG Leaders Index.

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